The U.S. Senate is expected to vote soon on whether to use the Congressional Review Act to kill an Obama administration climate regulation that cuts methane emissions from oil and gas wells on federal land. The rule was designed to reduce oil and gas wells’ contribution to climate change and to stop energy companies from wasting natural gas.
The Congressional Review Act is rarely invoked. It was used this month to reverse a regulation for the first time in 16 years and it’s a particularly lethal way to kill a regulation as it would take an act of Congress to approve a similar regulation. Federal agencies cannot propose similar regulations on their own.
The methane emissions regulation is vehemently opposed by the oil and gas industry, which believes the rule is burdensome because it would require expensive new equipment and pipelines to be installed that could impede oil and gas production. The U.S. House approved the measure to kill the regulation in early February. It’s now in the hands of the Senate, where some GOP senators remain undecided.
The Obama administration finalized the methane rule last year. It was intended to prevent natural gas from being wasted and to